All Roles Now Open To Females

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
Much later, I didn't join until 1983. And from my recollection, must people significantly reduced their time.

That's the problem with reminiscing, everyone remembers differently ^~
I agree. I have 7:44 in my training diary for a BFT in Feb 1984 in Muelheim. I'd be surprised if I did that in boots and denims, though I suppose it is possible as a racing snake.

As a comparator my 5000m on a tartan track in needle spikes that year was 16:08.
 
There were of course generations of soldiers who had no fitness standards. I can well imagine when they were first introduced certain old sweats making comments along the lines of "I served for X years and fought in Y wars without ever passing a fitness test....."
such a comment pretty much applies to my service history in the IDF - Jan 1980 - Nahal Infantry, Nahal Airborne Battalion, NCO in Nahal infantry, 1st Lebanon War, 1983 - 2003 training and ops in an IDF Reserves airborne battalion.
Neither did that prejudice our ability to operate as infantry - after all, what really makes a man (or woman) suitable for the infantry is the the ability to bear loads like a mule.
Yes we had periodic fitness tests but I don't recall anyone who was moderately fit for the role being binned for not passing one.
On the other hand, nowadays, even police-accredited armed security guards in the civilian sector here have to pass a physical fitness test twice annually, or their firearms permit is withdrawn.
 
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I believe that there is a mixed infantry unit called 'caracal' or something similar.
Israeli correspondent Loofkar is probably more in the know.
There are currently three mixed infantry battalions, manned/womanned mainly by conscripts doing their thirty-two month stint. Actually the women, for whom conscript service is twenty-four months, have to volunteer to do the additional eight months as well as reserve service each year like the men, until they get married. The mixed battalions' brief is operational border security rather than developing all-round infantry capabilties.
Successful completion of training in a mixed unit also enables female soldiers to try out for "Oketz" - the IDF's SF K9 unit.
Quite a few other branches of the IDF integrate female soldiers alongside males in field/operational units, notably field intel, MP and Home Front Command units.
Women also commonly serve alongside men in the paramilitary Border Police battalions.
 
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If not, then we've given our troops much improved and necessary skills and drills, greater operational flexibility and a massively increased chance of getting the job done and getting home in one piece.
Unless in overstating the requirement we've binned 20% of our recruits and are thus under strength, not so happy days. A balance must always be struck.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
Unless in overstating the requirement we've binned 20% of our recruits and are thus under strength, not so happy days. A balance must always be struck.
Except that it's not an over-stated requirement. If BAOR could manage training to be over-matched then today's Army should certainly be able to do so.

I agree that a balance must be struck but that doesn't make the point of balance halfway between what's needed and fantasy fixes that are at odds with both medical science and military good sense; designed purely to tick boxes and make the numbers work, and waved through by those who should know better because it's the cheapest and least disruptive way of papering over the cracks.

Numbers are a false comfort for GCC units if a substantial chunk of the kirk are unreliable or not up to it.
 
There are currently three mixed infantry battalions, manned/womanned mainly by conscripts doing their thirty-two month stint. Actually the women, for whom conscript service is twenty-four months, have to volunteer to do the additional eight months as well as reserve service each year like the men, until they get married. The mixed battalions' brief is operational border security rather than developing all-round infantry capabilties.
Successful completion of training in a mixed unit also enables female soldiers to try out for "Oketz" - the IDF's SF K9 unit.
Quite a few other branches of the IDF integrate female soldiers alongside males in field/operational units, notably field intel, MP and Home Front Command units.
Women also commonly serve alongside men in the paramilitary Border Police battalions.
Since I posted I had a look at Caracal on YT. They seemed pretty switched on, well trained, motivated and with high morale.
 
This just came up on youtube, can anyone confirme the females in the report are badged Inf or attached ?

I’m betting they’re attached arms. If you look at the marching squad near the end of the clip, you can see at least one AGC beret, however there was/is a practice of some attached arms wearing their own cap badge on a different coloured beret depending on circumstances e.g. REME cap badge on a beige beret.
 
There were chunky carthorse types who could pass the BFT in boots in 11.30 (early 1980s) just after finishing a smoke break but they couldn't manage the switch to shorts and trainers with a 10:30 target.

I can't exactly remember when the switch to occurred but my training diary tells me it was before 1984. I think it was before 1982. (Regular Army infantry.)
I did my last BFT in July '89 wearing boots and denims.
 
Except that it's not an over-stated requirement. If BAOR could manage training to be over-matched then today's Army should certainly be able to do so.

I agree that a balance must be struck but that doesn't make the point of balance halfway between what's needed and fantasy fixes that are at odds with both medical science and military good sense; designed purely to tick boxes and make the numbers work, and waved through by those who should know better because it's the cheapest and least disruptive way of papering over the cracks.

Numbers are a false comfort for GCC units if a substantial chunk of the kirk are unreliable or not up to it.
This week's term for 'what happened in my training phase' as CARRPS observed earlier and as I observed earlier we managed to fight all the big wars [Napoleonic, WW1, WW2] without any fitness standard.
It's worth considering that if you look at the relative size and weight of ordinary men in the 1800's most of the men were no taller and actually lighter than a modern woman.
 
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I am that old...

Women didn't do the same "three miles individual effort in denims/boots" (Tickle Test) or "1.5 miles squadded, 1.5 miles best effort, denims/boots" (Basic Fitness Test). Instead, the WRAC did (IIRC, individual best effort) two miles in denims and issued plimsoles,

In the late eighties / early nineties, some smartarse clubswinger investigated lower-limb injury rates among regular recruits, and came to the stunning conclusion that running on boots on tarmac was going to screw people up more than was actually necessary [1]. This tied in with the disbandment of the WRAC in 1992 (because until then they had an entirely separate depot and recruit training pipeline, Queen Elizabeth Barracks Guildford - lovely place, stayed there a couple of times).

So, the BFT moved from boots to trainers; and the women moved to the same BFT as blokes. This didn't bother me as a racing snake - IIRC at the point we changed, [2] I was doing the Tickle test wearing boots in about 20-21 minutes, and wearing trainers in about 18.

[1] Including me. Having joined in 1984, I got the Mk.1 Boot, Combat High that gave me a nice dose of tendonitis. Then discovered after a couple of CFT-length march and shoot competitions that I had chronic bursitis in my knees, that was only ever triggered by running on tarmac in boots while carrying load. Good motive to learn the Brecon Shuffle, that was...

[2] Bearing in mind the old mantra "the older I get, the better I was".;. I managed to come first in my platoon at RMAS with a 20-minute self-thrashing, but back then I only weighed 66kg and I'd nicked Dad's old NI Patrol Boots for doing runs...
I’d be genuinely surprised if the move from boots to trainers for the BFT has anything to do with the end of the WRAC. More related to a massive rise in lower limb injuries in the mid 80s to 90s coincident with the introduction of the BCH, later followed by the BCA and also the replacement of the black / white dap by the silver shadow trainer.

interestingly, I have started wearing barefoot trainers - remarkably similar to running the APFA around Old College and double endurance on Barossa in white daps.
 
There were chunky carthorse types who could pass the BFT in boots in 11.30 (early 1980s) just after finishing a smoke break but they couldn't manage the switch to shorts and trainers with a 10:30 target.

I can't exactly remember when the switch to occurred but my training diary tells me it was before 1984. I think it was before 1982. (Regular Army infantry.)
RAC it was about 1990.
 

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
I agree. I have 7:44 in my training diary for a BFT in Feb 1984 in Muelheim. I'd be surprised if I did that in boots and denims, though I suppose it is possible as a racing snake.

As a comparator my 5000m on a tartan track in needle spikes that year was 16:08.
So the likely answer is that the 1 has become obscured over time [or you forgot to write it in] and your BFT time was 17:44. The current world record for 5000 m is 12:37 and you were 5 minute faster than that.
 
This week's term for 'what happened in my training phase' as CARRPS observed earlier and as I observed earlier we managed to fight all the big wars [Napoleonic, WW1, WW2] without any fitness standard.
It's worth considering that if you look at the relative size and weight of ordinary men in the 1800's most of the men were no taller and actually lighter than a modern woman.
That would be wars that we lost millions in eh "prof"?
But hey if we allude fitness standards are unnecessary we don't have worry about them.
 

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
So the likely answer is that the 1 has become obscured over time [or you forgot to write it in] and your BFT time was 17:44. The current world record for 5000 m is 12:37 and you were 5 minute faster than that.
No. My 5000m was 16:08. My best BFT in trainers a smidgen under 7 minutes. I represented the Army at the marathon on and off for 15 years.
 

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